Martin Luther King Day Jr. Day and what you need to know on Monday

 America honors Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy 

Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebrates King’s birthday, honors his legacy and shines a light on civil rights. King was assassinated in April 1968 on a motel balcony in Memphis. In 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed a bill marking the third Monday of every January as Martin Luther King Jr. Day, becoming the first federal holiday honoring an African American.

Special report: 1968 – The year that transformed America

More: From boyhood to his last days, King pursued equality

Honor: 10 essential ways to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr.

What’s open and what’s closed on MLK Day? 

Since Monday is a federal holiday, most schools will be closed, as well as banks and the post office. Most grocery stores, restaurants and retail shops will be open. In Atlanta, the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park has been closed due to the partial government shutdown, but a grant from the Delta Air Lines Foundation will open the park through Feb. 3. The park includes King’s birth home, Ebenezer Baptist Church where King was a co-pastor, Fire Station No. 6 and a visitor center. Here’s a deeper look at what’s open and what’s closed on Monday.

Why Monday might be the most depressing day of the year

The third Monday in January is supposedly the gloomiest day of the year, according to a U.K. researcher who created a mathematical equation for what he called Blue Monday. His calculation is based on weather conditions, debt levels, time since Christmas and time since failing our new year’s resolutions. But, the validly of the equation is questionable. Mental health expert Isabella Goldie says depression can’t be calculated and the concept of Blue Monday is largely a PR stunt used to sell items advertised to improve wellbeing.

NYC is getting a little cheaper 

New York City is appealing to visitors for countless reasons, but price is not usually one of them. Starting Monday, the city will be at its cheapest thanks to a new initiative called NYC Winter Outing organized by the tourism marketing association, NYC & Company. For the first time, NYC Restaurant Week, NYC Broadway Week and NYC Must-See Week will take place at the same time. That will result in some of the lowest hotel rates of the year, shopping sales, theater, restaurant and attraction/sightseeing deals. Here’s how to take advantage of the deals.  

Winter Storm Harper upends Monday air travel

It’s been a rough holiday weekend for air travel. Airlines have canceled more than 4,100 flights in the United States since Friday, with disruptions extending into Monday. The culprit has been a potent winter storm – dubbed “Harper” by The Weather Channel – that’s brought heavy snow, rain and strong winds to airports from the Great Plains and Midwest into the Northeast and New England.  Flight delays could last even after the storm. Bitter cold is predicted to blast into the Midwest and Northeast in the storm’s wake, bringing the possibility of de-icing delays at busy airports. 



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